GAZA CITY — Israel escalated its military campaign against Hamas today, striking symbols of the militant group’s control in Gaza and firing tank shells that Palestinian officials said shut down the strip’s only power plant in the heaviest bombardment in the war so far.
PARIS — French soldiers secured a black box from the Air Algerie wreckage site in a desolate region of restive northern Mali today, the French president said. Terrorism hasn’t been ruled out as a cause, although officials say the most likely reason for the catastrophe that killed all onboard is bad weather.
KHARKIV, Ukraine — A small group of Dutch and Australian investigators walked the sprawling, unsecured site where Malaysian Airlines Flight 17 went down as their governments prepared police detachments they hope can help protect the crash area and help bring the last of the victims home.
JERUSALEM — Israel again pounded the Gaza Strip with bombardment today, driving up the Palestinian death toll to at least 720, while militants fired a flurry of rockets into Israeli territory, with most either falling harmlessly or intercepted by Israel’s Iron Dome antimissile defense system.
ROME — Pope Francis met privately today with a Sudanese woman who refused to recant her Christian faith in the face of a death sentence, blessing the woman as she cradled her infant born just weeks ago in prison.
ALGIERS — An Air Algerie flight carrying 116 people from Burkina Faso to Algeria’s capital disappeared from radar early today over northern Mali and “probably crashed,” according to the plane’s owner and government officials in France and Burkina Faso.
BAGHDAD — Iraqi lawmakers elected a veteran Kurdish politician as the nation’s new president today, hours after an attack on a prison convoy killed dozens of people, brutally underscoring the challenges faced by the country’s leaders as they struggle to form a new government.
GAZA CITY, Gaza Strip — Israeli troops battled Hamas militants today near a southern Gaza Strip town as the top U.S. diplomat reported progress in efforts to broker a truce in a war that has so far killed more than 680 Palestinians and 31 Israelis.
EINDHOVEN, Netherlands — Two military transport planes carrying 40 coffins bearing victims of the downed Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 landed today in the southern city of Eindhoven, and pro-Russian rebels shot down two fighter jets in Ukraine’s restive east as fighting flared in the region.
BEIJING — Five employees of a company accused of selling expired beef and chicken to McDonald’s, KFC and other restaurants in China were detained by police today after an official said illegal activity was an organized effort by the supplier.
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Congress is hardly a bastion of diversity. The Senate is 93 percent white. The Republicans in the House don’t have a single African-American or Asian-American member. And men in both chambers outnumber women 4 to 1.
JERUSALEM — A rocket fired from the Gaza Strip landed near Israel’s main airport today, wounding one Israeli and prompting at least two American airlines to cancel flights to Israel in a reflection of high anxiety over air travel after last week’s attack on a Malaysian jet over Ukraine.
BRUSSELS — The European Union agreed today to impose new sanctions against officials deemed responsible for Russia’s actions in Ukraine, amid mounting international anger after a Malaysia Airlines plane was shot down over rebel-held territory.
JAKARTA, Indonesia — Jakarta Gov. Joko Widodo, who captured the hearts of millions of Indonesians with his common man image, won the country’s presidential election with 53 percent of the vote, officials said today.
PESHAWAR, Pakistan — A group of militants attacked a security checkpoint in a troubled northwestern tribal region before dawn today, and eight security forces and four militants were killed, a government official said.